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Old 31st March 2023, 18:01   #61
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Re: The real reason why Škoda Kushaq & VW Taigun don't sell - A Case Study

Not only Kushaq and Taigun, the Virtus and Slavia too deserve to sell more in numbers. The 2.0 cars are brilliant but there are a few problems that need to be solved with their cars. Mainly the problems are related with the VAG management. By any means the numbers in which they sell aren't great. This is the same case with Honda India too where the management is lackluster there too.

The Problems which need to be resolved ASAP:

Better Marketing : Now, the VAG group and nowadays other car brands think that by flashing lights on the cars and telling that they are segment best in terms of safety, looks etc. isn't enough by any means. They have to mention the strong points of the cars by making the ad's attractive. Another problem which is the major reason for the downfall of VAG group cars in India is their reputation. People have and go with preconcieved notions that their cars are unreliable. VAG group should adress this issue by mentioning the technology used in their cars and assure the customers that their cars are reliable. This is only possible by ad's. I'm sure that giving focus on marketing of the cars will increase the sales by 80 %.

Better Interiors : Though the dashboard design of the VAG 2.0 cars looks good, segment best to be honest, the materials used is sub par. The dashboard of the slavia and kushaq was actually not that well fitted. I could clearly see some gaps in the roofliner where the reading lamps are place and even the AC vents under the touch screen had minute gaps.

Better Space Management : Went I went to check out the slavia and kushaq with my family, I was actually dissapointed by the space on offer for 3 people at the back. Just FYI, we all are lean too. But still 3 people at the back was a very tight fit. I really don't understand where the segment best width, wheel base etc. really translated inside. Skoda should have given more importance to space management as nowadays space is very important in cars and somewhere these cars take a bit of a hit in this department when compared to the competition. The main problem is shoulder room of the passengers.

Better Pricing : Now, in BLR the Slavia and Kushaq DSG costs a whooping 23 lakhs on road ! No typical family car buyer would want to pay this much amount for a 4 seater especailly. These cars could be cheaper by a lakh atleast for what they offer.

Better Features : They should have offered more practical features like 360 degree camera and ADAS as these features are very important nowadays. These type of features at the current prices of the 2.0 cars would be a steal deal. But, unfortunately the VAG group, instead of adding features, removed features ! Especially Skoda.

Better Service stations and showrooms: Even though the showroom I visited was very good, there are a number of people who tell that these cars service experience and showroom experience of these brands is not great in many states and places of India. This should be looked into by the VAG group ASAP.

AN intresting thread posted by fellow bhpian : https://www.team-bhp.com/news/left-v...ted-see-taigun

The dealership which I visited in BLR called RAJA SKODA has good management and they treated us well. They didn't make us wait and we got the test drive of the car as soon as we asked them.

To conclude, these 2.0 cars are brilliant but these cars suffer from some problems ( a bit to major ones ), The VAG management should take care of these problems ASAP as in the recent sales chart of 2022, the whole VAG group india cars came in least selling cars ! These cars definetly deserve to sell better as they are good in many aspects too when compared to the competition.

These type of ad's are needed to attract the customers. An ad from skoda itself :

Last edited by MotorDev : 31st March 2023 at 18:23.
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Old 31st March 2023, 18:09   #62
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Re: The real reason why Škoda Kushaq & VW Taigun don't sell - A Case Study

I can relate to this thread as both these cars were in my shortlist when i was out shopping exactly this time last year.

I would list down some of my own observations :

1. Showroom experience :: Both VW and Skoda folks behave as if they are selling me a 2 + cr INR Maybach. Utter snobbish behavior and look down on you as "hey cattle class, whatcha doing in a business class seat ?".
They do not offer any test drives upfront and any request for a home test drive is declined. Forget the test drives the lady in one of these showrooms did not even bother to give us the price and variant list.

No follow ups, no calls, no contact with a prospective customer, funnily both of them remembered they had a prospect customer a good 2-3 months after the showroom visit by which time we already had our car delivered from Honda.

Compare this to the Honda sales guy who came with the City to my home not once but thrice and allowed me to see how it fits in our cramped basement parking and car lift.

2. Interior quality :: People who have owned earlier generation cars could easily point out the degrade in the quality of the product.

3. Reliability and perception :: With so many horror stories floating around the internet one simple google search will send a prospective customer looking elsewhere.

4. High retail cost :: A vehicle which does not offer anything substantial (lets keep the engines aside, how many of the actual buying Junta outside this learned community knows the difference between a 1.0 l and a 1.5 l OR between a 3 pot and 4 pot ?? ) over the Nexon or Brezza commands a price tag of over 16 lakhs here in Bombay with the top end retailing near 20 lakhs

5. Poor variant planning :: a person who does not want a DSG box also has to compromise on the number of airbags and smaller tyres.

After reading through this thread, I can say that I am not alone in giving a miss to these twins and am very happy with my Honda City with almost 10K on the ODO in an year.

Regards
Diesel
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Old 31st March 2023, 18:17   #63
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Re: The real reason why Škoda Kushaq & VW Taigun don't sell - A Case Study

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Originally Posted by MotorDev View Post
To conclude, these 2.0 cars are brilliant but these cars suffer from some problems, mainly the problems are related to the management, so the VAG management should take care of these problems ASAP as in the recent sales chart of 2022, the whole VAG group india cars came in least selling cars ! These cars definetly deserve to sell better as they are good in many aspects too when compared to the competition.

These type of ad's are needed to attract the customers. An ad from skoda itself
In your own post - The Quality is bad, the interior space is not well managed, the servicing is poor, pricing is unaffordable and due to lack of features the vehicle is not value for money!

And yet they are brilliant cars - You see where this is going.

No doubt VAG group has found its niche set of buyers who value certain things over the average buyer in these segments, perhaps they are also happy with the current sales figures in comparison to how they were in the past - who knows.

That brings us to the Kool-Aid in the room, are they any better at those things they claim to be? Is that significant enough to swing the booking?
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Old 31st March 2023, 18:18   #64
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Re: The real reason why Škoda Kushaq & VW Taigun don't sell - A Case Study

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Originally Posted by Kosfactor View Post
In your own post - The Quality is bad, the interior space is not well managed, the servicing is poor, pricing is unaffordable and due to lack of features the vehicle is not value for money!

And yet they are brilliant cars - You see where this is going.

No doubt VAG group has found its niche set of buyers who value certain things over the average buyer in these segments, perhaps they are also happy with the current sales figures in comparison to how they were in the past - who knows.

That brings us to the Kool-Aid in the room, are they any better at those things they claim to be? Is that significant enough to swing the booking?
Exactly my point, these cars are extremely good and way ahead in terms of competition of some departments like performance and dynamics ! But they take a hit when we see them as a family car. . The reasons which I above mentioned really make people to change their decision and book another car as a typical Indian family car buyer does not car about performance and dynamics. :(

Last edited by MotorDev : 31st March 2023 at 18:22.
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Old 31st March 2023, 18:57   #65
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Re: The real reason why Škoda Kushaq & VW Taigun don't sell - A Case Study

I am glad I convinced a good family friend of mine to drop both these Skoda/VW during Q3 22. He ended up buying the natural competitor - Creta.

I have sent him the thread link to read/share with his family (who naturally were smitten by the fancy Skoda/VW because they were upgrading their 15 year old i10).

PS - Their first car, the reliable i10 Magna has nearly completed 1.70 Lac Kms over 15~ years and they are not going to sell it anytime soon. For someone who owns a i10 for 15~ years, upgrading to a reliable car made sense. Reliable w.r.t overall ownership experience, not just the mechanical part of a car.

These 2, VW or Skoda models would not have ticked all the boxes in his long run experience.
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Old 31st March 2023, 18:58   #66
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Re: The real reason why Škoda Kushaq & VW Taigun don't sell - A Case Study

I was in this market so here are my observations - requirements: 4 star or better car, automatic only since most of the use will be city with occasional long drives to remote locations.

The 1L versions are too expensive compared to peers. I test drove the Kushaq 1L, quite liked the car. It drove well, the steering wheel was nice to hold, but the touch AC controls were unacceptable - could never get to use them right. While the cars drove well, they weren't so much better in that aspect, than say a Magnite.

The 1.5L versions only come with the DSGs - which have a terrible reputation of failing. If they had an AT version I think I'd probably have gotten them.

When I spend nearly 25L OTR the last thing I want in my mind are the fear of getting stranded on long drives.

I eventually ended up buying a Magnite Turbo CVT and another car is expected in the family - quite possibly the Astor or Kushaq 1L AT. I really wanted to enjoy the 1.5L turbo, but will never spend 25 big ones on a car that doesnt give me peace of mind. Money isn't the issue, the fear of getting stranded and then having to deal with their service centres is the issue.
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Old 31st March 2023, 19:00   #67
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Re: The real reason why Škoda Kushaq & VW Taigun don't sell - A Case Study

Good topic to discuss.
I would like to put a non-technical aspect I experienced.
Many of friends consult me about buying a car, I suggested few of them Taigun / Kushaq. But everybody replied me 'it is a small car like Nexon, WRV etc, why should I pay so big amount?'
Then I had to explain them sub4m & above 4 m SUVs (so called SUVs actually). They didn't know that Taigun / Kushaq are above 4m because their street presence is very small.
Few other friends said 'i won't pay this much amount for a short heighted Taigun / Kushaq. I want a bit taller car like Creta'. Many people think if they can't see the top of the roof while standing beside the car, then the vehicle is tall & has good street presence.
I found this common thought among many rich but non-technical / non-automobile friends. There are other beliefs also regarding bonnet height when compered to our waist height.
I suggest my friends a suitable car thru my own 'why why analysis' method which may take few minutes to one hour. During such discussions I noted these observations.
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Old 31st March 2023, 19:11   #68
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Re: The real reason why Škoda Kushaq & VW Taigun don't sell - A Case Study

I own Slavia 1.0 and below are my 2 cents
1. Size: No matter what anyone says, size matters as well. Both SUVs look like more of a competition to sub 4 meter SUVs than Creta.
2. Part Quality: The parts used in interiors feel substantially of lower quality both visually as well as in terms of reliability. People who will consider Skoda/VW may ignore missing features but never the quality of the interiors.
3. Premium pricing- Giving discounts and doing price corrections once the product had bad publicity seldomly saves the product.
4. Niggles: fuel pump, AC, windows up down all these are mechanical issues which highlights that the cost cutting is done not only in visual aspects but in terms of mechanical part quality as well.
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Old 31st March 2023, 19:52   #69
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Re: The real reason why Škoda Kushaq & VW Taigun don't sell - A Case Study

I believe it is the brand value and the image of the particular model of the car from that brand. A huge majority of car buyers buy cars based on the trust they and their friends/relatives have for a brand and then in particular models of a brand. They just ask around within their circle instead of spending time reading thousands of lines of reviews online.

Why is a car not selling? It is a million-billion dollar question. Even if VW fixes 100% of the problems with Kushaq or Taigun, I don't think those cars cannot come out of the image the public has made about those two cars.
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Old 31st March 2023, 20:01   #70
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Re: The real reason why Škoda Kushaq & VW Taigun don't sell - A Case Study

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Originally Posted by androdev View Post
Lack of trust in the brand is the reason.

Product-market fit is actually fantastic.

Ford could not sell Endy as people only wanted to buy Fortuner. It’s all about the trust in the brand.
Endeavor is the only vehicle that have Fortuner a run for its money.
Also, the Ecosport sold major volumes and received race reviews in terms of driving pleasure and handling. Indians trusted the brand and gave them a lot of love.

I would say it was the other way around. It was Ford that didn't love India or trust Indian markets to be important enough to update their product line timely and bring many of their already available products to India.

In a country that is obsessed with hatchbacks, why would a company like Ford not launch an already available car like the Fiesta is anyone's guess.

They also had many sedans, SUVs readily available in their product line that could be made available for Indian markets. No additional cost was needed for product development. They also had many engine options readily available in their product line. They just needed to launch their products in India without additional cost overheads.

Ford didn't quit Indian market due to lack of trust from Indians. Someone sitting behind a walnut desk in US made the decision to exit the 4th largest automobile market in the world. It's baffling that their executives didn't view the Indian markets important enough for Ford to continue to selling cars in India.

To further my point about how trusting Indians are of foreign companies - Indians still buy Honda products even as Honda has stopped manufacturing vehicles multiple times.
Here are the list of vehicle from the top of my head that Honda has stopped manufacturing. Civic, BRV, Jazz, WRV, CRV.
The Indians - who are price conscious, who worry about resale value, about after sales service, about availability of spare parts, still continue to buy Honda vehicles very trustingly.
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Old 31st March 2023, 20:12   #71
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Re: The real reason why Škoda Kushaq & VW Taigun don't sell - A Case Study

Greetings.

My 2 cents.

VAG cars have/ had great build quality, have great engines, designed with excellent safety parameters and good driving dynamics.

What they lack is the reliability of a Maruti or Hyundai.
Poor sales and service network, expensive service costs, issue with availability of spare parts and most importantly exorbitant pricing for the car we get.

I'm a 2014 Polo TDI owner with just a little above a lakh KM on the ODO. The car is serviced in a FNG and ownership is fuss free till now.

Drive Safe.
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Old 31st March 2023, 20:30   #72
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Re: The real reason why Škoda Kushaq & VW Taigun don't sell - A Case Study

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Originally Posted by SerArthurDayne View Post
Disclaimer:


1. If I want to buy a Petrol Car under 15L, I might as well go for a compact SUV (Sub 4m) and get a fully loaded, top-of-the line automatic Hyundai Venue, Brezza or even Nexon than getting an incomplete car. Kushaq/Taigun don't really compel people to push their budget.

2. Even if they push their budget to 16-18L, they don't chose any of these cars. For the 1L variants of Kushaq/Taigun, at any given price point, the competing cars in the mid-SUV segment offer more features/value. Case in point: Panoramic Sunroof. Yes, we Indians are obsessed with Sunroofs. Why would I want a small Sunroof if I can get a panoramic one at the same price. That's why even Seltos could never come close to the sales of Creta, despite being feature loaded. Those who think that this reason is silly, know as little about the on-ground sentiment of Indian car buyers as the market research team at Škoda/VW.

3. The most fun 1.5L variants are really expensive, with top models going upwards of 22L. At this price point, many better options are available in the market, where competitors are offering 7 seaters, 4x4, ADAS, you name it. So the German twins don't really pass the value-for-money test that we Indians love.


SerArthurDayne, you have shared great points. About 1.5 years back when my wife & were searching for a SUV in the range of 15L, we checked out Kushaq & Taigun. The primary reason why we ended up prioritizing Seltos over these two was the size. Seltos offers more space than Kushaq & Taigun at similar price points. As you rightly said, VW/Skoda could have reduced the length of the cars and got the tax benefits and competed with the likes of Venue/Sonet/Nexon at a better price point.

However regarding your other point, proper facelift with fancy features such as Sunroof could aid these two - I don't agree. Kushaq & Taigun already offer a small sunroof in some of the variants, similar to what Seltos offers. Yet they are nowhere close to Seltos. Echoing Bhpian Motorworks point, the segment is dominated by Seltos/Creta and the ground up designing of Kushaq & Taigun could have been benchmarked with Seltos/Creta.

I think VW/Skoda have done a fairly decent job with Slavia & Virtus - priced them right, designed them well (my personal opinion - i really like the exterior designs & dimensions of both). Slavia & Virtus are also a product of their 2.0 strategy. Every car has its USPs, fancy interiors or features may not be the USPs of Slavia & Virtus.
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Old 31st March 2023, 20:47   #73
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Re: The real reason why Škoda Kushaq & VW Taigun don't sell - A Case Study

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Originally Posted by PowerSpike View Post
Endeavor is the only vehicle that have Fortuner a run for its money.
Also, the Ecosport sold major volumes and received race reviews in terms of driving pleasure and handling. Indians trusted the brand and gave them a lot of love.
As they say in car business - there are no problems that a good car cannot solve. This was the story with Ecosport as well as Endeavour.

It does not mean customers trusted the brand , it simply means the product is exciting or attractive enough to ignore the obvious dangers of buying a Ford

Trust is certainly a factor, you'd have to bring out something very exciting indeed to attract customers despite the lack of trust.
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Old 31st March 2023, 21:43   #74
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Re: The real reason why Škoda Kushaq & VW Taigun don't sell - A Case Study

Tne Taigun and Kushaq look small from inside, the interiors are dull, the back seat is too much upright and they look like a 4m hatchback. By the time these cars came, the competitors were already adding lot of features which made these cars look a bit out-dated. And then the horrible AC issue, how can this happen in first place? I almost bought Taigun till I saw lots of complaints on AC performance.
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Old 31st March 2023, 21:46   #75
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Re: The real reason why Škoda Kushaq & VW Taigun don't sell - A Case Study

Very good inputs which made reading interesting and helpful for future car purchases. In small towns it is mostly price, ASS, reliability, road presence and resale value which matters.

Last edited by sukhbirST : 31st March 2023 at 21:48.
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